Jay-Z’s music video for the 4:44 track ‘Moonlight’ has been released, and it has been crafted to take the form of an all-black remake of the classic TV show Friends.
As Pitchfork reports, the film clip which was directed by Alan Yang, co-creator of Master Of None, recreates the iconic TV show Friends using an all-black cast, including Lil Rel Howery (Get Out), Lakeith Stanfield (Atlanta), Jerrod Carmichael and Tiffany Haddish (The Carmichael Show), Issa Rae (Insecure), and Tessa Thompson (Veronica Mars).
Inspired by the film Moonlight, and the subsequent Oscars mixup between it and La La Land, the song and its clip tackle the ever-present themes of diversity and racial equality present in the media, and especially within Hollywood.
The first half of clip takes on a relatively true-to-form recreation of the TV show, which as The Huffington Post notes, was once called one of “the whitest shows of all time.” The clip then moves into a brief behind-the-scenes clip, which sees Jerrod Carmichael speaking to comedian Hannibal Buress, who has an issue with the all-black clip.
“It was terrible, man. It was wack as shit,” Buress claims. “It was just episodes of Seinfeld but with black people. Who asked for that?”
“When they asked me to do it, I was like, ‘Okay, this is something like subversive, something would, like, turn culture on its head,’” Carmichael protests, to no avail. “You did a good job of subverting good comedy,” Buress retorts. “You gonna do black Full House next?” From there, the music starts and the real film clip begins – showing everything from Carmichael’s point of view.
At this stage, the video is a TIDAL exclusive, but the clip is set to be available for the general public next week. However, footage of the video’s recreation of Friends‘ opening scene has been made available online. Check that out below.
— TIDAL (@TIDALHiFi) August 4, 2017